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Amateur futsal team Nighthawks: Building community main focus amid lack of support for female footballers

“Nice pass!” someone said as a player attempted a goal-assist, even as the ball didn’t end up where it was meant to. 

I was at a half-day-long tournament – the Women’s Futsal Crazy League regularly organised by local company D2D Sports, which holds monthly sporting events for organisations. 

That kind of shout-out is a shot in the arm common in the sporting world, typically offered by members belonging to the same competitive team, but this particular holler came from a member of the opposing squad, who had been watching from the bench, waiting to be substituted at any point in the 10-minute match.

Futsal matches work like football except on a smaller scale. Each team typically consists of five players, the games are shorter, and matches are played mainly indoors on hardcourts rather than large fields of natural grass. 

As futsal courts are smaller, it is also easier, I observed, for onlookers to offer live feedback to the players.

It didn't seem to matter whether they were teammates or rivals – the women (including supporting spectators) cheered each other on and helped each other up, both literally and figuratively. 


“The atmosphere at these women’s league tournaments is largely great. The players intermingle and sometimes even hold picnics after the matches.

“Despite them ultimately being competitors, there is a very good sporting spirit among the teams, unlike with the men,” said Rasvinder Singh, executive director of D2D Sports.

Shadowing one of the top and longest-participating teams of the futsal league, the Nighthawks, I quickly learnt what he meant. 

The atmosphere was like that of “Sunday football”, with the different teams greeting each other spontaneously, catching up and